In the very early 80s, there were lots of bands wearing Teutonic, Germanic, Weimar and Berlin references. This raised a few eyebrows among the politically aware – correct? – who felt that some combos had strayed from Weimar in to the era of Germany history that came after. Think of man with small dark moustache who invaded most of Europe and you’ll have arrived.
Now, Spandau Ballet were about as far removed from the Third Reich as you can get. Let’s make that clear from the off. But it’s amusing to see some journalists vexing about their look and name at the time.
One such was a scribbler called Sunie who penned a rather silly piece for Record Mirror on February, 28th, 1981.
“Unfortunately, the element of this project which I find disturbing, threatening and worthy of debate lies not in the music itself, but in the premise upon which our young warriors have erected their grandiose musical/lyrical edifice.”
Wow – serious stuff. Sunie went on to note that the album was white-on-white with a muscular naked form. The journalist was rattled by a quote inside the record sleeve – “…the soaring joy of immaculate rhythms, the sublime glow of music for heroes…stirring vision….journeys to glory…”
Sunie said this linked Spandau Ballet to an ‘Aryan Youth ideal’ reminiscent of you know whose youth movement. The review then went on to make it clear there was no linkage to far right groups being suggested just a sense of discomfort.
The argument gets unintentionally funny when Sunie tells readers to play ‘Muscle Bound’ back to back with ‘Tomorrow Belongs to Me’ from Cabaret and see how the ‘mood’ is the same. “Tread very carefully for all our sakes,” Sunie ended by warning the band.